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September 23, 2009

Video game switches consoles mid-story

Posted: 09:27 AM ET

It isn’t often a video game series will switch consoles - say, from an Xbox to a PlayStation - part of the way though a game's story. The move makes it hard to build a fan base. And it's irritating, especially if gamers don't own both systems.

But, whether intended or not, that's what has happened with the widely acclaimed game called "Dead Space."

The shoot-em-up game started on the PS3 and Xbox 360. But the story continues with a Star-Wars-style prequel that's only been released for Nintendo's Wii. Called "Dead Space Extraction," that Wii game may leave some "Dead Space" fans annoyed. If an Xbox fan, for example, wanted to keep following the game, he or she might have to buy a Wii, which retails for about $250.

Or find a friend who owns a Wii.

The cross-console narrative happened somewhat by accident.

While developing the “Dead Space” game for the PS3 and Xbox 360, executive producer Steve Papoutsis realized they weren’t doing anything for the Wii. He became tasked with creating a game that not only satisfied Wii fans, but took advantage of the unique controllers for the console.

Patoutsis said there was plenty of story left untold from the first release, but the challenge was making a game that maximized the Wii system.

Many of the weapons are the same from game to game, but the key difference is the perspective of the gameplay. “Dead Space” is played from a 3rd person angle so you can actually see your character. “Dead Space Extraction” is played from a first-person perspective – looking through your character’s eyes.

“It plays like a movie,” Papoutsis said. “I would call it an action horror game with more talking among the players.”

Papoutsis said they hope to open up the eyes of the Wii owners to show them what can be done. He said “Dead Space Extraction” plays best with friends, which the Wii console is intended to do.

He emphasized that they did not intend to exclude their fans of “Dead Space” with the new release, but they wanted to create a unique game for owners of the Wii.

The game, published by Electronic Arts and developed by Visceral Games, is due out on September 29.

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Ben   September 23rd, 2009 9:49 am ET

This is often spun as customizing the game for the control scheme, but many developers have admitted that the Wii is simply not capable of the high-end graphics that the 360 and PS3 are. The fact is they'd spend almost as much time doing the whole game over for Wii to accommodate its low-end graphics capabilities as they did to make it for the HD consoles in the first place.

It makes sense just to make it a separate title to give SOMETHING to the Wii gamers, but this is the first time I've seen anyone position this as a hit on the real consoles that games are developed for.

Most real gamers would lament the fact that one of the three premier consoles available on the market is so drastically different in capabilities from the other two that developers are often forced to give up developing the same game for all three platforms.


Garren   September 23rd, 2009 10:27 am ET

This is not an uncommon thing to see, it happens all the time. Dead Space: Extraction is a type of game that is considered a "spin-off" from the main series. Spin-offs generally have a major difference in the type of gameplay that they offer but they are still based in the same fictional universe as the main series.

This exact same thing has happened with the Resident Evil series. Resident Evil 5 is on Xbox 360 and PS3 but not on the Wii, however, no the Wii has Resident Evil: Umbrella Chronicles, which is a spin-off from the main series and it plays differently and tells different parts of the story, much like Dead Space: Extraction.


David   September 23rd, 2009 10:33 am ET

I've seen this happen before. The Soul Calibur series. Soul Calibur I was for the DreamCast, Soul Calibur II was released for the PS2, GameCube, and XBox, then Soul Calibur III was only released for the PS2.


spacetycho   September 23rd, 2009 10:47 am ET

Dead Space was great. I played it on my 360. I have am lucky enough, to have a Wii also and I'm really looking forward to the new game. The Wii's controller is perffect for the game. I am not surprised they moved consoles. While the graphics most likely will suffer I know the interactivity of the Wii's controller will be plenty to keep me and the rest of the fans more than happy.


Bobby   September 23rd, 2009 11:27 am ET

It's an exciting time for Wii owners, who have been desperately waiting for high quality titles. The Dead Space team should be praised for their efforts.


Clint   September 23rd, 2009 11:50 am ET

Yes, it is annoying to have these 'One Console only' releases and even more frustrating to get a title console switch. Another example is Ace Combat that has been with Playstation for years now, well the last release was on the 360. Alas, what are we the loyal fans to do? Either we buy each console out there or complain to the makers. Thanks, for shafting us again Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo. Well, I can't really get mad a Nintendo. They made Mario and Link, think about it.


Binkery   September 23rd, 2009 11:56 am ET

Well if you want to give full disclosure you should point out the full story of Dead Space is through comics, a movie, animated features, a Xbox/PS3 game, and a Wii game. So really it follow Dead Space you need a lot more than just two consoles.


CODfan30   September 23rd, 2009 12:12 pm ET

This whole console cross-over, "we're doing it for this one but not that one" thing that keeps going on is SERIOUSLY starting to upset me. Make games for all consoles, don't do preferencial treatment towards one or the other, or any of that. If things continue on the current trend, I'll sell my ps3 and Xbox and if I even feel like gaming after that, I'll buy it on my computer.


Serious Gamer   September 23rd, 2009 12:19 pm ET

Let them develop for the fad that is the Wii (in its current hardware configuration). The rest of us will continue to buy games that push the envelope of what the 360 and the PS3 can do, and not buy games or gaming systems based on how much we have to jump, swing around, and flail our arms like we've gone off our meds.

As an experienced gamer, coming up on 27 years (yes, i had the colecovision, atari, among almost every other system made, with the notable exception of the Wii), gaming systems such as the Wii do add gamers who might not otherwise play games, but in my opinion, it also takes advantage of newbies who don't know that games moved past the side scrolling 2D shovelware that Nintendo keeps putting out. It's not to say every game is crap, but look at the review sites and check how many Wii games fall into the "barely playable even after a few beers at a frat party" category. It's a system using outdated hardware and gimmicky controls that every 7 year old boy wants but puts down after a couple days of playing.

And just so the Wii fans don't question this, I DID try the Wii, but after a few minutes of "gameplay" I saw that it was nothing more than a gimmick, akin to the talking Elmos and pet rocks that sold so well. I liked Dead Space, I own both the 360 and the PS3, and even though my particular 360 has failed 7 times and has been sent back to Microsoft 7 times, I would still buy the game for that system before I'd waste money on the Wii.

But that's just my opinion...


Jeff   September 23rd, 2009 12:45 pm ET

Why are so many PS3 and Xbox owners angry at the Wii and its owners? I happen to own a Wii and love it. Sure there are bad games out there. It seems like from their perspective everything on the PS3 and XBox are the most perfect games; one better than the last. There are bad games for all systems. I happen to own about 25 Wii games and are there some I like more than others? Sure but that doesn't mean I haven't been happy with them all. My two brothers have Wii's and my parents, who are in their '60s, have a Wii (yes, they all play more games than Wii Sports). It is easily the most accessible and entertaining video game system to date. I have in-depth games (the hard core gamer variety) and simple fun games. I'm 31 now and I have a job. I'm glad that one day I can sit and play Call of Duty and the next day my fiancée and I can play Mario Party. I love games but I grew up. I enjoy a system that can give me two sides of gaming. One being a nerd for an hour or so a week and the other having fun with friends and family as we swing our arms around the living room. Somehow I get by with the graphics looking just fine...even on my HiDef screen.


Joe Gags   September 23rd, 2009 12:58 pm ET

What a weird article. This does happen all the time with spin-off titles. And most people who own one of the power consoles has a Wii.


Manny   September 23rd, 2009 1:00 pm ET

Don't really see what the big deal with people complaining it being on the Wii. It is a prequel that expands upon story elements told of in the first game and which had parts shown in other media (I know there was a comic book released around the time of the first game). The only reason the game exists is to create a Dead Space entry on the Wii and use its motion controls.

As for the validity of the Wii as a platform, it is what it is, it has been the home of a lot of crap but there are various gems available for not only the causal gamer but the discerning gamer that is after certain games.


Michael   September 23rd, 2009 1:59 pm ET

I was a huge fan of dead space and i dont want to get a wii just to follow the story i think they should make another dead space in first person for the 360,pc, and ps3


Damon   September 23rd, 2009 2:13 pm ET

@Serious Gamer – Really now. You tried the Wii for a few minutes and you knew it as a gimmick. Talk about not giving it a fair shake.

I've been playing "video games" since 1976 and I'm amused to see the comments coming out from people. It's about game play, not intense graphics. Many titles are just re-hashed shoot-em ups, many of them derived from Pitfall on the Atari 2600.


Jason   September 23rd, 2009 3:17 pm ET

Luckily, they moved to the console that has sold more than all others combined.


Rini   September 23rd, 2009 3:31 pm ET

Ben Said "Most real gamers would lament the fact that one of the three premier consoles available on the market is so drastically different in capabilities from the other two that developers are often forced to give up developing the same game for all three platforms."

Similarly, PC gamers lament the fact that games are sometimes "simplified" or the graphics turned down to accommodate console system limitations.


Pitboss   September 23rd, 2009 3:40 pm ET

This is nothing new, take a look at the second biggest gaming console franchise, Final Fantasy . It first started on the NES, moved to SNES, then it is what made the PS and PS2 (FFVII just by itself) then the exclusive rights got taken away again and Xbox became king.


Bryan   September 23rd, 2009 6:30 pm ET

I believe that it is an outrage that Dead Space moved systems. I own a Wii and have only found 5 games that are tolerable, but alas i have gotten to the point where its just a waste of space in my house. They should have kept Dead Space on the 360 and off of the Wii where no justice will be done to the game.


Yohan Pyon   September 23rd, 2009 10:16 pm ET

It happened to Final Fantasy 12, as well. The sequel came out for Nintendo DS instead of PS2 or PSP (assuming that PS fans would buy a PSP instead of DS)

Anyway, the Soul Calibur series did NOT start with Dreamcast. It started with PS1 with Soul Blade ("Soul Edge" in the Japanese versions).
It just came back to its original console. That's all.


Ffrindak   September 24th, 2009 12:40 am ET

Ha ha ha...watching these comments has been amusing. But I must agree with Damon. I've been playing since '88 and I have a PS3 and 360, but my all-time favorite is still "Legend of Dragoon" for PSone. It really is more about gameplay and story than just graphics...I mean look at "Mirror's Edge" or whatever it's called. Amazing graphics...but so many people seem to hate it.


Shane McGuire   September 24th, 2009 5:31 am ET

I currently own the PC version of this game.

Yeah, uh there is a reason that I have yet to finish the game.

The controls are POOR!

Plus ammunition for your most basic of weapons is sparce, and to kill the monsters, you simply don't have enough ammo to get the job done.

So as a result the game has been shelved at my home until EA decides to make a real first person shooter!

I heard the same complints about Doom 3 on its release. Ammo was not the issue with me, but the lack of a tactical flashlight. Same issue, when you have to download a Flashlight Patch, its pretty silly. I did finish Doom 3, but it was only because the game kept my interest up.

As for Dead Space, yeah that is pretty much what it was on my HDD, and got uninstalled!

As for the concept, it was a really good concept, just a poor execution.

Nuff Said!


r4   September 24th, 2009 5:46 am ET

i think they should make another dead space in first person for the 360,pc, and ps3


Nerd Fighter   September 24th, 2009 6:10 am ET

Sure, the Wii has its fair share of "bad" games attempting to influence certain demographics to spend $50 bucks on them, but that happens on all consoles. Some games can really suck because of the Wii's controls (e.g. Alone in the Dark, where the controls were very abysmal), but some games control schemes were rather good (e.g. Metroid Prime: Corruption).

Arguably, the Wii is directed to more casual gamers, and some hardcore games aren't supported because of the hardware limitations, which why some games are third party games are released on other more powerful units.

The best games, arguably, on the Wii are those developed by First party and Second party groups. The long running series are pretty solid, and the Wii is worth it if you have played the other games continuously (Playing series like Legend of Zelda nearly religiously, like many other Nerd Fighters). I can see how some groups are unhappy because Dead Space is having a Wii version, which well not have any subsequent ports, but the game developers chose to because the Wii hardware offered them more opportunities to try to create another solid game. They will probably still continue making new installments for the XBox 360 and PS3.


Josh in VA   September 24th, 2009 8:09 am ET

Crossovers are as old as the hills. For instance I LOVED the Oddworld series, but I've only played Abe's Oddesy and Abe's Exodus because they were the only ones released on PC, all the others were X-box, 360, and Gameboy. As a result I don't know the rest of the story.

But even as a PC gamer I have to agree with Ffrindak: "Legend of Dragoon" was an awesome game! I'll have to dig it out now. Glad I didn't trade my PS2 for my PS3. "Double Slash!"


Ted   September 24th, 2009 10:41 am ET

I started with a Wii, purchased by accident, they had 2 available, I was just happy to be there. It only lasted for a few months because no one wanted to play 3 minutes games anymore. I purchased a PS3, this is the Best Game Console ever Made. I had considered XBOX, but I don't want to pay the XBOX Live and the Wireless Adapter. PS3 its the Right Choice, the Best Choice.


Bill G   September 24th, 2009 11:58 am ET

I am a big Dead Space fan, I have an Xbox 360, but I don't mind that this game will be for Wii only. Let Wii have the bad games, I'll happily wait for the next GREAT Dead Space game on 360/PS3. Also I have a Wii for my daughter, but I still won't be getting this Dead Space game for Wii... EA fails.


Matt   September 24th, 2009 2:47 pm ET

I have nothing against this, the Wii is a very different console and it's receiving a very different game, but I just wanna point out that Dead Space was also on the PC, where I played it. Us PC gamers get no love: (


Matt   September 24th, 2009 4:50 pm ET

Games and the Gamers that play them are ready for a revolution...

There should be no reason to choose between systems...

THERE SHOULD BE ONE SYSTEM!

The only thing that should change is the games.


Avery   September 27th, 2009 4:35 pm ET

Dead Space was not simply a "shoot-em-up" it was a third person suspense title.

If you had taken the time to do a little research you would find that console jumping has always been occurring. The Final Fantasy series has gone to and from Nintendo, to Playstation, back to Nintendo, then again to Playstation, and now even Xbox. Same with Sonic, Metal Gear, Grand Theft Auto, and a few others.


Josh   September 28th, 2009 1:34 pm ET

I'm sorry, but IMHO "serious" gamers typically don't exclusively play on consoles. Serious gamers build custom PC rigs with the latest video capabilities that go above and beyond the limitations of the 360 and PS3 that are already several years old now. On the PC side, there have been multiple generations of video cards and processor upgrades.

Personally, I love the Wii. My wife fortunately got one the day of release back in 2006 and we have put hundreds of hours into it, mostly with Wii Sports. I find it somewhat comical to hear so many people claim the motion controls are a "gimmick." To me, they are intuitive and a refreshing progression from the typical, multi button controller/mouse and keyboard setup.

As for the cutting edge games, I play on my custom SLI-rigged PC (sans the weird neon lights).


Chris   September 29th, 2009 5:44 pm ET

Hmm... why is this "news"? They've been doing the platform switch-up for years now...


Survious   September 30th, 2009 12:04 pm ET

This has been done before, someone needs to do a little more research next time before publishing/writing a story.

The Wii is basically the EASY setting on any video game (its for new or novice gamers), which is fine, since it allows more people to play. There is nothing wrong with that. The XBOX and PS3 are for Normal to Advanced gamers anyway.

Hmm...that would have been a better story I think to go along with the game they just talked about.


Matt   September 30th, 2009 2:58 pm ET

Any owner of a console needs to understand that they have bought themselves into a fast-paced, proprietary world where at any moment the competitive market may obsolete their system or move their favorite franchise into the arms of the competition. PC users go through these pangs constantly.

It's a shame to leave behind the 360 users, and this is an unusual move, but I agree with some of what's already been said here: the Wii controller simply makes more sense to funnel FPS games into. Many claim that their XBOX/PS controller skills are unsurpassed, but you'd be in the 99th percentile to do this with the same ease as using a Wiimote or mouse. The joystick is simply an inferior input device for the type of precision the FPS game demands.

All that said, however, shame on CNN for ignoring the fact that Dead Space: Extraction is also not being released for the PC, which it also previously was. EA understands that the PC market is the crucible and breeding ground for cutting-edge technology as proven with Crysis' attempt to push the boundaries, but it's a big mistake to pull one of their few highly successful titles of the year from the market.


John Frederickson   October 2nd, 2009 1:11 am ET

The biggest console jump of all time occured when the Final Fantasy series made its transition from the Nintendo to Sony's Playstation... Some say it helped the Playstation achieve its record breaking sales. Now of course, with this generation of consoles we have Final Fantasy XIII on the PS3 AND Xbox360. Am I concerned that this game will only be on the Wii... Not really.


Michael Haskins   October 4th, 2009 12:25 pm ET

AMD Phenom FTW! woo hoo


Eric   October 4th, 2009 1:21 pm ET

the Wii sales for $199, not $250


Anthony Stark   October 4th, 2009 2:23 pm ET

Big deal, so they made a dumbed-down port of Dead Space for the Wii like a year after it's release on PS3/360. Happens all the time.


Nick   October 5th, 2009 12:37 pm ET

To all "Serious Gamers"

The Wii is not a gimmick. It is a new paradigm for making video games. Is it a great system? No. But it's good, and there are enough good games on the system to make it worth most people's time.

Real gamers should understand that there is nothing revolutionary about what is on the PS3 or XBox – all it has done is added a few more pixels (and don't get into the specs – the end result is a somewhat prettier game). They are merely doing the job of a PC, but with less accurate controls, less functionality, and no ability to upgrade.

All in all, the Wii is truly the only videogame console worth buying on its own merits – the other two are pointless, and "Real gamers" would be stupid to waste money on them instead of getting a good computer.


xbox 360 games   October 9th, 2009 2:55 am ET

Intel Quad Core Rules !!!


Net browser   October 15th, 2009 12:56 pm ET

There has been a few other annoying examples, such as Star Ocean or Shenmue, both switching to Xbox (the latter may not continue at all). It's tough for the consumer, and shows poor judgment on the part of the game and hardware developers.


NextGenGamer   October 16th, 2009 2:01 pm ET

Why are so many PS3 and Xbox owners angry at the Wii and its owners?

Maybe because hardcore gamers (the ones that fund most of the industry) know Nintendo did a bad job on its Wii console. The hardware is not up to par with current technology. It is very limited on what it can do. The only difference its is Wii mote and thats it. The other console makers took a financial hit selling their consoles but not Nintendo. They sold out of date hardware for profit. WE REAL GAMERS know the price of hardware and don't like to get rip off! I know, i know, its all about the games. If you like playing games with 5+ year old technology then go ahead and over pay for them!


Cliskiplollabiz   November 5th, 2009 4:31 pm ET

A little off topic, Guys... I have a question. Last week I had fun with this site:
Rivalspot.com – Play Ps3 tournaments for cash
They say you can play online NCAA Basketball game tournaments on any console for cash... had anyone tried that before? Looks like a cool idea...
Are there any other sites where you can play sports games for real moneys? I Googled and found only Bringit.com and Worldgaming.com but it looks these guys don't specialize in sport gamez. Any suggestions?


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